India vs Australia ODI : BCCI adds T Natarajan as back-up for injured Navdeep Saini in India’s ODI squad

India vs Australia ODI Series : The BCCI on Thursday added left-arm seamer T Natarajan to India’s ODI squad as half-fit paceman Navdeep Saini’s cover.

According to BCCI press release that landed close to midnight, Saini had complained of back spasms which led to the 29-year-old yorker specialist from Tamil Nadu’s inclusion in the 50-over format.

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Natarajan, who has played 15 List A matches so far, was initially a net bowler accompanying the Indian team and then made it to the T20 squad after Varun Chakravarthy pulled out and now is a part of ODI squad.

Also Read: Ind vs Aus: 3 batsmen, 1 opening slot; Who will open with Shikhar Dhawan in 1st ODI?

India’s ODI squad: Virat Kohli (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul (WK), Sanju Samson (WK), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Mayank Agarwal, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur, T Natarajan.

Update on Player Fitness

  1. Mr Rohit Sharma – He is presently undergoing rehabilitation at the NCA. Mr Rohit Sharma’s next assessment will be conducted on December 11thfollowing which the BCCI will have clarity on his participation in the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Australia.

Mr Rohit Sharma had to come back to Mumbai after the IPL to attend to his ailing father. His father is now recuperating well and that has allowed him to travel to the NCA and start his rehabilitation.

  1. Mr Ishant Sharma – Ishant has recovered completely from his side strain injury sustained during IPL 2020 in the U.A.E. While he’s building up his workload in order to achieve Test match fitness, Mr Ishant Sharma has been ruled out of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

Rohit returned to Mumbai after IPL to attend to his ailing father: BCCI

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Thursday clarified the reason behind batsman Rohit Sharma not travelling to Australia with the rest of the squad after the conclusion of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

India and Australia are slated to lock horns in three ODIs, three T20Is and four Test matches. Rohit was rested for the white-ball leg, but his participation in the Test series is not confirmed as he would be undergoing a further injury assessment on December 11.

The BCCI has clarified that Rohit returned to India to attend to his ailing father. The board also clarified that the batsman went to National Cricket Academy (NCA) after ensuring that his father was okay.

“Rohit is presently undergoing rehabilitation at the NCA. Rohit Sharma’s next assessment will be conducted on December 11th following which the BCCI will have clarity on his participation in the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Australia. Rohit Sharma had to come back to Mumbai after the IPL to attend to his ailing father. His father is now recuperating well and that has allowed him to travel to the NCA and start his rehabilitation,” the BCCI stated in its official release.

On Thursday, India skipper Virat Kohli had shed light regarding the whole injury management issue involving Rohit Sharma. The Indian skipper clarified that before the first selection meeting for the Australia tour, Rohit was advised two weeks of rest.

“Well, before we had the selection meeting in Dubai, we got a mail two days before which said that Rohit is unavailable for selection because of the injury he picked up during the IPL. It mentioned a two-week rest and rehab period, and it said that the pros and cons of the injury were explained to Rohit and he understood that. It was the information we got by mail but after that, he played in the IPL. We all thought that he would be on the flight to Australia which he wasn’t and we had no information whatsoever on the reason behind him not flying to Australia,” Kohli had said during the virtual press conference on Thursday.

“After that, the only information we have received on mail is that he is at NCA and he will be further assessed on December 11. So from the time the selection meeting happened and the IPL ended and now when this mail came about his assessment, there has been lack of clarity, we have been playing the waiting game on this issue and this is not ideal at all,” he added.

After the white-ball leg comprising of three ODIs and three T20Is, both sides will shift their attention to the longest format of the game. The first Test of the four-match series between India and Australia will be a day-night contest, beginning from December 17 in Adelaide.

Kohli would be playing just one Test and then he would return home after being granted paternity leave by the BCCI. The four-match series will be a part of the World Test Championship (WTC). Australia is on top of the standing while India is at the second position after ICC altered the points system for WTC due to the coronavirus pandemic.